Neuberger & Partners LLP - Baltovich | Video Transcript

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ANCHOR: To find out more about what happens now, I want to bring in Joseph Neuberger. He's a criminal lawyer who joins us from his office. Hi, Joseph.


ANCHOR: Tell us, what are we going to see differently the next, in the next trial as the defense tries to get an acquittal?

JOSEPH NEUBERGER: What we're going to see from the get-go in that trial is the defense is going to take every piece of circumstantial evidence that the Crown tenders and aim it directly at Paul Bernardo. They are going to focus on Paul Bernardo as the suspect, as the strong suspect for the death of Elizabeth Bain right from the get-go. And they are going to make that case every time a witness testifies, every time a piece of evidence is filed. They're going to make that case right away.

ANCHOR: Now if you were his lawyer, would you put Baltovich on the stand? He hasn't been up until now.

JOSEPH NEUBERGER: In a circumstantial case it is always a very difficult decision, do you call a client, do you not call a client. Is it the most classic difficulty that you have as a defense counsel. In this case, given all of the exposure, all of the time that he has had dwelling with this conviction, one would think he would be just jumping at the opportunity to take the stand and say I did not kill my, my girlfriend at the time. I didn't do it. And as a defense lawyer, it's a careful judgment you have to make. But I think there would be a compelling reason to call him on this trial to testify for once and for all get that vindication that he needs.

ANCHOR: Even risking cross examination?

JOSEPH NEUBERGER: Well, I mean he's been living with this case for a long time. He's got very skilled lawyers. He'll be well prepared for a cross examination and I think he could be able to withstand it. And I think he would want the opportunity to do it. But it's not necessary. In my opinion this will be a strong case for the defense to make to the jury that it was Paul Bernardo as the more likely suspect. But if it were me, I'd probably lean towards calling Mr. Baltovich to testify.

ANCHOR: Do you expect a, a lawsuit almost very much like a Millgard [phonetic]?

JOSEPH NEUBERGER: Well, in this case, again, we don't have a clear cut answer vindicating Mr. Baltovich at this time. The Court of Appeal ordered a new trial. However, the language from the Court of Appeal was quite strong. There are certain aspects of the case which was put to the jury which was very prejudicial. Much of the circumstantial evidence more sensibly and logically points to Paul Bernardo.

And the Crown took a very strong focus on Mr. Baltovich at the trial and ridiculed the defense theory about Paul Bernardo as being a likely suspect. That's no longer applicable. That may have been a, a myopic view, a, a very focused view unnecessarily on Mr. Baltovich. So there may be an opportunity for compensation but it doesn't scream out like other cases.

This is a typical circumstantial case where you still cannot have a clear cut winner at the end of the day, although we believe in, in the defense area that Mr. Baltovich certainly will have a very compelling case for an acquittal and will get that vindication that he so much deserves.

ANCHOR: Always insightful. Joseph Neuberger, thanks for your time this evening.

JOSEPH NEUBERGER: My pleasure. Thank you very much.